How many meals pass by mindlessly while watching TV, checking your phone, or thinking about work? We may be fuelling our bodies and eating healthy, but are we really enjoying it? Learn how you can eat more mindfully.
The practice of eating mindfully, also called ‘intuitive eating’, has its roots in Buddhist teachings. This concept aims to reconnect us more deeply with the experience of eating and, more importantly, enjoying our food. When you eat absent-mindedly, you often don’t realize that you’re full or how the food really tasted. This can lead to overeating, stress and anxiety. Eating mindfully is about eating without distractions, hurry or judgement.
Intuitive eating makes you aware of your body telling you that you’re hungry or satisfied. This practice teaches you to use all your senses to eat food that both tastes good and is nourishing to your body. Eating mindfully can help you to enjoy your food more, but it also makes you aware of what your body really needs. Note that eating mindfully is free of guilt: if you sense that you’re really craving a piece of cake, don’t feel guilty about it and simply enjoy it.
You can practice eating mindfully by starting to limit distractions during a meal. Instead of watching TV or checking your phone, make an effort to sit down and fully focus on what you’re eating. Chew slowly and pay attention to how your food smells and tastes. Do you like it? How does your body feel? During your meal, consider your feelings. Are you still hungry or are you nearing satiety? Make the resolution to have a least one mindful meal a day free of distractions.
Being mindful about food is not only about the act of eating, but also relates to preparing the food. Our minds are often somewhere else when we’re cooking and sometimes we buy ready-made food to save us some time. In ancient traditions it’s said that the cook transmits subtle properties of his or her thoughts and emotions into the food. Perhaps that’s why a homemade meal prepared with love always tastes better.
To cook mindfully, simply focus your attention on the moment before you start. Try to be aware of all the sensory experiences you feel when you’re going through the steps. Notice how you’re transforming the ingredients as you work and how they’re all coming together in the perfect dish. You’ll notice that your mind will want to wander, but gently bring it back to the present.
This method of cooking helps you to get back in touch with the food that you eat. By approaching food preparation mindfully, you can turn this daily routine into a ritual that not only nourishes the body, but also the soul.
In response to the rushed fast food industry, there’s also a movement dedicated to slow food. Slow food revolves around fresh, fair and sustainable food that is prepared with the intention of it being thoroughly enjoyed. It helps us to connect to the origin of our food so we can truly appreciate it. Are you curious about experiencing this new way of cooking and eating? Try our recipes for Fresh raspberry smoothie with rosewater and Summer Citrus Salad to experience the power of slow food made with love that is also thoroughly enjoyed.
Discover the other ways to bring more health, happiness and peace of mind to your life here.